Healthy Weight Loss Tips For Lifelong Success

Losing weight is never easy. It takes hard work and a new way of thinking. Perhaps you’ve tried one diet after another only to be disappointed by more weight gain. Fortunately, there are healthy ways to lose weight and keep it off. Use the healthy weight loss tips below to get started on the road to lifelong weight success.

Get Creative with Your Diet Plan

Think about your diet for a moment. Are strict regimen diets going to work when you’re so accustomed to eating what you want when you want? Do you have time and money to plan meals that require many ingredients that you’ve never even heard of? If not, then you probably won’t last long on many diet plans. When you determine that it’s time to lose weight, use the foods you already eat to your advantage – even the fattening ones. Don’t cut them out altogether, just eat smarter!

Try eating your favorite items in smaller portions along with a new tasty food that’s healthy. For example, if your favorite meal is two cheeseburgers with fried potatoes, turn this into a healthier meal by eating only one cheeseburger, boil a potato for 45 minutes (tastes great with ketchup), and add a couple of vegetables such as green beans and corn to your meal.

You’re actually getting more foods and adding good nutrition, but eating smaller portions of the fattening ones. The potatoes taste just as good boiled as they do fried but are much healthier!

Add Protein-Rich Foods or Protein Shakes to Your Diet

Another way to achieve healthy weight loss is to add protein-rich foods to your diet or drink protein shakes as snacks or replacement meals. There are even special diets and companies where you can get protein shakes customized for your body’s nutritional needs. Examples include the La Bamba diet, Shapeworks, Herbalife products, and so forth. With La Bamba Herbalife diets, you will use protein to get off extra pounds quickly. With other protein diets, you can drink protein shakes and take protein supplements for long-term dieting. It depends on your particular weight loss needs.

Protein helps your body to burn the calories you eat throughout the day so your body does not continuously store fat in unwanted areas. Protein also helps build and preserve lean muscle mass.

Drink Plenty of Water for Healthy Weight Loss

Water is essential to a healthy weight loss plan. Water hydrates the body and organs. It gives you energy and helps you to fill full throughout the day. Water also helps your skin and cells. No matter what type of diet you choose, be sure to drink around six to eight glasses of water per day.

The benefits of healthy weight loss are many: lower blood pressure, better figure, more energy, healthier heart and organs, less stress on bones, joints, and muscles, and less mental stress.

*Note: As with any diet plan, consult with a physician to be sure there are no health risks when trying a new diet. If you have health conditions that would prevent you from eating certain foods, then find a diet that will be safe for you.

Use the tips above to take back control of your weight and live life to the fullest!

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photo: Jennifer Burk

Beware Of Eating Too Much Protein

Protein is an essential nutrient, and is vital to your health. It is used to build muscles, skin, hair and nails. However, many people put their health at risk by eating too much protein.
The typical American diet already provides plenty of protein and there is no point in adding any more, unlike fat cells, there is no place in the body to store protein so the excess is eliminated or is seen as fat rather than muscle.
So what you need to do is to consume just enough protein to allow your muscles to be healthy, perform work and grow. But how much is just enough?

You only use protein for about 15% of your energy use, the majority of energy comes from fats and carbohydrates. Exercising doesnít necessarily mean that you require more protein but more carbohydrates to stop your body breaking down protein and using that for energy.

Try to make sure that 70% of your protein comes from sources such as meat, fish, eggs or poultry. The complete protein provided by these foods combines with incomplete protein consumed from other food sources. So your body makes the best of all the protein that you consume.
If you are consuming too much protein, you are probably consuming too many calories over your maintenance levels and this will show as an increase in your body fat levels. And with the advent of the latest fad high protein diets, not enough carbohydrates are being consumed so the protein is converted to glucose and not converted into muscle growth.

What is needed for muscle growth is not more protein but high intensity strength training with the required amount of time for rest and recovery between sessions. Because that major bodybuilding star you saw in the latest magazine requires 300 grams of protein a day doesn’t mean that you have to. What he won’t tell you is that taking Steroids is behind his muscle gains and not his diet.

High intensity strength training and not food stimulates muscle growth.
Consuming excessive amounts of protein is not only bad for your liver and kidneys but also promotes vitamin and mineral deficiencies. It is also linked to osteoporosis and some forms of cancer.
One way to overcome the need to eat large quantities of protein is to increase the consumption of protein in stages until a maximum efficiency point is reached and then to drastically reduce it again. This obliges the body to over-compensate by increasing the efficiency for the absorption of protein into the body.

Below you can find an example of a Protein Loading diet.

*** Week One ***

Breakfast: Poached egg on toast, cereal with fruit and milk.

Snack: Fruit and protein shake.

Lunch: Chicken, potato, and vegetables. Fresh fruit salad.

Snack: Nuts, fruit, and biscuits with cheese.

Dinner: Fish any style, rice, vegetables, whole meal bread and fruit salad.

*** Week Two ***

Breakfast: Two poached eggs on toast, cereal with fruit salad and milk.

Snack: Nuts, fruit, protein shake.

Lunch: Chicken with potatoes and vegetables (any style)

Snack: Nuts, fruit, biscuits with cheese.

Dinner: Roast Beef with vegetables, brown rice, whole meal bread.

*** Week Three ***

Breakfast: Three eggs any style on toast, cereal with fruit and milk.

Snack: Nuts, fruit, and protein shake.

Lunch: Turkey with potatoes and vegetables, brown rice, whole meal bread.

Snack: Nuts, fruit, protein shake.

Dinner: 1/2 Chicken, potatoes, veggies, brown rice, whole meal bread.

Before Bed: Protein shake.

*** Week Four ***

Breakfast: Four eggs any style on toast, cereal with fruit and milk.

Snack: Nuts, fruit, protein shake.

Lunch: Spaghetti with meat sauce, potatoes, brown rice, whole meal bread.

Snack: Nuts, fruit, protein shake.

Dinner: Roast Pork, potatoes, brown rice, whole meal bread.

Before Bed: Protein shake.

After week four of this protein loading diet, move from the max intake of protein to the lowest. So in the fifth week go back to week one menu, in the sixth week, week two menu and so on.

This protein loading diet provides a balance of protein, fats and carbohydrates and combined with high intensity strength training will be very effective in increasing muscular bodyweight without the need to ingest large quantities of protein.

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photo: Xochi Romero